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Archive for January, 2008

Steadfast SoldierWhen we wrote about Gettysburg National Military Park in 2006, we admitted that it was indeed an “iconic American destination,” but warned you to wait until the new $100M Visitors Center opened in 2007-2008 to visit since the its “current infrastructure matches neither the area’s historical prominence nor its 2M people per year tourist influx.”

Since our review, a decision has been made on the proposed Gettysburg casino (no go), and the closed-for-much-needed renovations Battle of Gettysburg cyclorama is one step closer to opening.

Our local paper announced this week that “A grand opening celebration for the restored Gettysburg Cyclorama painting and the Gettysburg National Military Park visitor center/museum will take place in September.”

We also learned from the paper that a team of Polish experts were flown in from Gab’s former residence Wroclaw to head the cyclorama’s restoration. What do Poles know about cycloramas?

A lot.

Ryszard Wojtowicz, his wife, Danuta Drabik-Wojtowicz, sister, Wiktoria Wojtowicz-Janowska, and Wieslaw Kowalczyk worked on the preservation of Wroclaw’s own cyclorama, just as epic in size and relevance to its companion in Gettysburg, just as dilapidated before Wojtowicz’s team got to it. Wroclaw’s cyclorama, known to many simply as “The Panorama” depicts the Battle of Raclawice, “a famous episode of the Kosciuszko Insurrection, a heroic but in the end fallen attempt to defend Polish independence.”

(You already know how we feel about Kosciuszko.)

So, September’s grand openings will certainly necessitate a new visit and a new review to Gettysburg. In the meantime, click here to read what we wrote in 2006.

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Lincoln Memorial Full Frontal

Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday was last Tuesday, his holiday is this Monday. At which National Park Sites can I celebrate his life in the meantime? Two days ago we suggested his birthplace in Atlanta and today we suggest the Lincoln Memorial, home to one of his most famous speeches: The I Have a Dream Speech. On that August 28, 1963 day, the Lincoln Memorial grounds served as the centerpiece for the one of the most important (and among the largest) political rallies ever to occur, the 1963 March on Washington.

Every time Michael walks up the Lincoln Memorial steps he feels the same rush of expectation and the same flood of emotions. It is a pilgrimage site and a place to give secular thanks and blessings not just to Mr. Lincoln but to Dr. King and the pioneers of the many human rights organizations that have rallied here. The Lincoln Memorial is a quintessential American icon and a must-see destination for all Americans.

Click Here to Read More.

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Hand in HandHappy Martin Luther King, Jr. Birthday Day. Wait a sec, I don’t have off work until Monday. What gives? Well, today is his official born on date, January 15, 1929. He would have been 79. What should you do to celebrate, either today or Monday?

Today has already happened so there’s little wiggle room there. But on Monday you could go to his National Historic Site in Atlanta! It’s encompasses terrific museum, Dr. King’s birth home, and the the Ebenezer Baptist Church.

We really enjoyed our time there amidst the healthy crowds and exciting energy. It was wonderful to see so many people of all colors, age and nationality remembering and learning about the incredible life and message of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. together. So even if you can’t travel to Atlanta, remember Dr. King’s message of togetherness, hope, and promise for a more peaceful future.

Click Here to Read More about Martin Luther King Jr. National Historic Site.

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